CHICAGO -- For Carlos Guillen and Magglio Ordonez, it's no secret that the 2011 season hasn't gone the way they would have liked on a personal level.
Both players have nursed injuries and then struggled at times, finding themselves out of manager Jim Leyland's everyday rotation.
Guillen didn't even see his first action of the season until July 16 and then found himself back on the disabled list less than a month later with a bothersome left wrist. Ordonez has also struggled to find a rhythm since missing about a month from May 11-June 13 because of weakness in his surgically repaired right ankle.
Though he came back to hit .294 in the month of July, Ordonez had trouble keeping up that pace in August, hitting just .213 and finding himself splitting starts by the time the month came to an end. He's seemed to step up in his scaled-back role, however, extending his hitting streak to 12 games in Monday night's victory and hitting .450 (9-for-20) this month.
"I feel great. I'm seeing the ball good, I'm feeling good," Ordonez said. "Now, I just look forward to trying to take advantage of every opportunity they give me. I'm ready to play, and the most important thing is that we're winning."
More than Ordonez starting to contribute again with his bat, it's been that type of attitude that has impressed Leyland. Even with Guillen hitting just .205 in his limited time this season and Ordonez hitting at a .245 clip, it hasn't been easy for Leyland to relegate the veterans to situational roles down the stretch.
"I can't tell you enough about -- and I mean this sincerely -- how Magglio Ordonez and Carlos Guillen have handled their situations," Leyland said. "Nobody could have handled it more professionally, and I know it's got to be tough on them and it's one that eats at me sometimes. But I can't tell you how proud I am of those guys. These guys have done a lot for this organization."